Posts Tagged ‘commute’

Ten Things To Liven Up Your Commute

June 21, 2009

Editor’s Note: Here are some fun tips from our contributor, Anthony Coley…….

Subject: 10 things to liven up your commute

1. Stop and buy your sweetie some flowers, you’ll be loved!
2. Stop mid way for something to drink and do some people watching.
3. Ride slower and check out the scenery.
4. Run an errand on your way to or from work.
5. Take a detour somewhere you’ve never been.
6. Stop and help someone with a bike problem, flat, slipped chain….
7. Ride a different bike every once in a while.
8. Ride earlier or later than normal. Riding when it’s dark changes everything.
9. Ride with a stranger and talk about something other than bikes. Easier said than done.. 😉
10. Compare gas prices at the different gas stations you pedal by.
— This was the lowest on my Friday commute: (Note: Now gas is over $3.00/gallon!)Since this photo was taken gas is over $3.00 per gallon!

 …….and two more I just thought about..

11. Count the number of traffic lights. My commute has 39. Seems like alot…
12. Take some pics to show your cool commute:
— Here are a few from yesterday:ac1

ac2ac3ac4 ac5

Gruppo Bici N.A. Introduces Designer Bicycle Bag Collections

June 11, 2009

Editor’s Note: Another press release for your pleasure……….


BOULDER, CO USA (June 11, 2009) Gruppo Bici N.A. announces today the release of designer bicycle pannier, shopper, seat bag, fixie top tube protector and tube sac collections by Canditalia S.r.l.

“We are excited to introduce a collection of designer bags for bicycles under the Canditalia brand,” says Gruppo Bici N.A. company spokeswoman D’Abria Versace. The designer bicycle bags by Canditalia include the B-Berry, Doppio G and Louie V, collections resembling Burberry, Gucci and Luis Vuitton fabrics, respectively.

“The designer vinyls are remnants, not considered first-quality or replica,” states spokeswoman Versace. “Instead of ending up in a landfill as waste, we are able to upcycle vinyls that do not meet the stringent requirements of the designer. Though the materials are two- to three-times the cost of non-designer vinyls, we consider the scenario a win-win.”

Introducing the collections in the United States, Gruppo Bici N.A. is offering wholesale pricing direct to consumers for a limited time. “We recognize that consumers are making purchases with economic forces in mind,” D’Abria Versace says. “As a result, we are offering wholesale pricing direct to consumers through July 4, 2009; this offer also applies to our Atala, Carraro and Umberto Dei bicycles while supplies last.”

An example of the bags mounted on a bike.

An example of the bags mounted on a bike.

“The Canditalia designer collection for bicycles is a fabulous way to dress-up any city, commuter, cruiser, fixie or townie bicycle, regardless of condition or vintage,” statess spokeswoman Versace. Canditalia designer bags for bicycles are not authentic, genuine or replica Burberry, Gucci or Luis Vuitton articles nor is the company making any related claim.

Distributed exclusively by Gruppo Bici N.A., all Canditalia bicycle accessories and bags are made in Italy and the United States. Canditalia accessories, bags, carriers and locks are available for purchase online at and should be available to consumers and retailers the first two-weeks of July 2009; the designer bicycle bag collection by Canditalia can also be seen on the Gruppo Bici N.A. company Blog at

Founded in 2005 by two Domus Academy students, Canditalia S.r.l. is a Milan, Italy-based company specializing in the design of bicycle accessories. Translating to “Candied Italy” or Italian Bicycle Candy, Canditalia products include vintage-style bicycle racks and locks, found on many Italian bicycles as original equipment, and a collection of designer bags for bicycles. Other accessories planned by Canditalia include messenger bags and school satchels, with future designs including the use of non-designer fabrics and vinyls.

Gruppo Bici N.A. is a Boulder, Colorado-based distribution company dealing exclusively in Italian bicycle products and publications. Gruppo Bici N.A. is the exclusive importer and distributor of Atala, BiciSupport, Carraro, Compagnia Editoriale, La Cuba and Umberto Dei bicycles, cycling products and publications in North America. Gruppo Bici N.A. also owns the worldmark and name of Canditalia and Cicli Italia, Italian bicycle companies that blend art with function in accessories and bicycles that epitomize timeless Italian style.

One Man’s Commuting Story

May 21, 2009

Editor’s Note: Anthony Coley, contributor to The Cyclist, has a story of the commuting kind to tell…………

My bike commuting story:

It’s been a year since gas was $4.50 a gallon and I started bike commuting regularly. As the price of gas climbed year after year I
kept telling anyone that would listen “once gas hits $4.00 a gallon I’m done driving, I’m going to ride my bike to work“. Sometime in early 2008 gas hit $4.00 a gallon and I kept driving and changed my tune to “once gas hits $4.50 a gallon I’ll start bike commuting“.

Last year high gas prices motivated many to commute by bike

Last year high gas prices motivated many to commute by bike (Photo by A.Coley)

April 2008 in Southern California gas hit $4.50 and I started bike commuting. I didn’t commute every day because I quickly found it was a lot of work to gather all my things and leave my house at 4:45 AM to make the 13.5 mile commute so I can be at work by 6 AM. But, the more I commuted the easier it got and I gradually increased my days. I started commuting one day a week, then two, then three and currently do four days a week.

Unfortunately, my work doesn’t have showers ( or anything bike related ) and the gym down the street is one of the super high-end places with something like $150 monthly dues. Ouch! That’s pricey for me… So, I do the bird bath thing. I actually have a more colorful name for the bird bath process, but I’ll spare you… After a year I have it down to a science. Getting to work at 6 AM has its perks because I hardly ever see any one the restroom, so I pretty much have reign to take care of business. I tried the baby wipe thing, I tried the wet towel thing, but what works best for me is to use the pink soap, a water bottle and get busy. It’s almost as good as a shower, well, maybe not as good, but it works for me. NOTE: Just to be clear, I’m not washing my business ends over the sink. Also, I make a point to leave the restroom as clean as I found it so I don’t annoy my fellow employees or management.

Since becoming a full time commuter I’ve become slightly obsessed with gas prices and I see they are creeping upwards again, which I guess is to be expected since it’s summer. I wonder if will top $4.50 this year? Everyone hears the rumors about how high gas is going to get, but we won’t know for sure until we see it at the pump, or as we ride by the pump. 😉

I used the Gas Savings Calculator and last year I saved enough money to pay for my ‘new to me’ ( it’s used ) Specialized Langster I just bought last weekend.

Daily Savings: $3.25
Weekly Savings: $13.00
Yearly Total: $676.00

That’s great! I should have used this information when trying to convince my wife to let me spend the money on a new bike that I didn’t really need. She’s a sweetie and didn’t give me too much grief. I believe she makes a game out of messing with me about the number I have bikes I have. Hmm…

Anthony makes his regular commute on this Specialized Langster

Anthony makes his regular commute on this Specialized Langster

I read somewhere that people always post how many miles they ride to justify their rider status, so for the record, I logged around 2500 commuting miles and I feel that’s a pretty darn good accomplishment for someone who just started commuting.

How about you?
Do you have a bike commuting story to tell?

Xtracycle Build : Getting it home

March 28, 2009

Arleigh is building, documenting and writing out her build up of a Salsa Ala Carte mountain bike with 650b wheels and a Xtracycle Free Radical Kit.  This is an on going series so stay tuned for more installments.

Late this past week I took delivery of an Xtracycle Free Radical Kit at the shop.  The Xtracycle is of the 700c variety (they come in 26″ or 700c) that will be installed to my Salsa Ala Carte with 650b wheels.  The 650b wheels is why we decided to go with the 700c Free Rad Kit.  There should be enough room on the 26″ version but I’m normally running a 41.5mm tire and also would like to run Quasi Moto 2.0″ tires for light off road touring.


Getting the Xtracycle home was a task in itself.  I was wishing I had an Xtracycle to get the Xtracycle home!  As you might know, I’m carless and work about 25 miles north of Charlotte, NC at a shop in Mooresville.  My daily commute involves a 5 mile ride from the shop to bus stop.  Here you see the Xtracycle after my 5 mile commute to the bus stop.  The Xtracycle is strapped to my rack using a bungee and a couple of tie downs.  The ride was actually pleasant, other than an unexpected deer almost running me over.  (Deer are not common on my commute.)  Unfortunately for you I had to take the Xtracycle and Freeloader bags out of the gorgeous box it came in.  The box had funny sayings all over it, telling you how to recycle or reuse it.  It saddened me to leave it at the shop but there was no way I was lugging the whole thing home safely.

Arrive safely I did.  The bus driver thought I was on crutches and eyes were wide when I rode the last leg home through the darkness and street lights of Uptown Charlotte, NC.  I am the odd ball in our city, always carrying random things on my bike or hands.

Next in this series is the Free Radical Anatomy.